North Manitou and South Manitou islands get trail map treatment

The National Park Service and have produced new trail maps of a pair of Lake Michigan islands near Traverse City, Mich. North Manitou Island and South Manitou Island, part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, have been added to’s Classic Trails of Michigan map series. Each map illustrates trail grades, primitive roads, maintained trails and unmarked modern and historic pathways. They also mark historic sites, ruins, natural features, elevation changes and hiking amenities found throughout the islands. Each map costs $4.95, and are available at the Sleeping Bear Dunes Visitor Centers,, the Manitou Island Transit ferry company and outdoor shops throughout the state.

State forest offers an affordable camping adventure

(MI) Detroit Free Press – There’s still a way to travel cheaply, do things that kids and adults can enjoy together and get a feel for what the first loggers experienced when they made their way to the seemingly endless woodlands of northern Michigan in the 1870s — camping in the Pigeon River Country State Forest. This 105,000-acre stretch of woodlands — home to the biggest elk herd east of the Mississippi River — has some great overnight hikes for the fit and ambitious, and also some for casual afternoon walkers or people with young children who would like to get into the woods but can’t tackle anything too ambitious. More